From small beginnings, caring for people with dementia in one nursing home, we have grown into Concern Group, made up of Mental Health Concern and Insight Healthcare. We are now one of the largest non-statutory providers of mental health services in England.
Mental Health Concern (MHC) has supported people with mental health problems in the North East for many years. We have been registered as a charity since 1986 and have developed a reputation as a well-established and respected provider of health and social care services.
The charity was initially set up to provide high-quality, community-based alternatives to hospital care. We supported service users and their families through this challenging transition, particularly as service change accelerated in light of the 1990 Community Care Act.
During the 1990s we worked closely with NHS trusts and councils to develop specialist, nurse-led services for people with complex mental health problems. We learned a lot during this time, and we still help lots of people to move from secure and hospital-based settings into the community.
In the late 90s, we found that opportunities for people to live independently in their own homes with ‘just enough’ support were limited. We therefore worked with our service users, colleagues, and commissioners to develop specialist supported housing across Tyne and Wear.
We are now the lead provider of mental health accommodation-based supported housing in Newcastle.
During this period we continued to grow and develop our dementia care services. These developments were built upon a passion for person-centred care and a ‘needs-led’ approach to people who can often challenge services.
We continue to provide a wide range of dementia care services. These include: 24-hour specialist care for people with complex dementia, respite, assessment, and the Gateshead Community Challenging Behaviour Service.
Throughout the early 2000s, we developed services to help people in their own communities, through a number of ‘day services’ and activities.
We have continually modernised and developed these services, which now operate as part of our Moving Forward service model, which has a considerable track record of helping people back into work, education, and other meaningful activities. We have extended our offer into a number of areas in the North East, now helping over 1,000 people each year. Watch the above video, created by one of our service users, for more information.
In 2009, MHC began to venture into primary care. We initially worked with Oakdale Services, an experienced provider of psychological therapy and wellbeing at work services. In 2011 we acquired Oakdale Services.
Since then our reputation for performance and quality has led to significant success and growth in these fields. Now operating as Insight Healthcare, we provide a range of psychological services across the country.
Insight Healthcare now sits alongside MHC as an integral part of Concern Group. We operate across England, providing services for 36 NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups and various local authorities, as well as delivering projects funded by charitable grants such as the Big Lottery Fund.
We continually strive for our services to remain relevant and innovative, looking to collaborate with our health and social care colleagues whenever possible to ensure that we play an important role in local services.
Our current areas of focus include:
• developing creative alternatives to hospital admission
• bespoke packages of care
• supporting community engagement
• exploring how we can best use technology
All of our work is focused on promoting good mental and physical health and wellbeing, as well as supporting the recovery journeys of those living with mental ill-health.
We are proud that, whilst we have developed and grown considerably over nearly 30 years of operation, we still work to our strongly-held values, ensuring that the people we serve remain at the centre of what we do. We value:
• compassion and hopefulness
• being open and friendly
• inclusivity and fairness
• experience and expertise
• hard work, creativity and innovation
• going the extra mile with people to achieve the right outcomes